I updated this post after I found out Nanny described below was not what she first appeared. I took out her name and replaced it with “Nanny X.”
I hired a nanny.
Nanny X is just one of those sweethearts of the world. If she walked into our backyard I have a feeling cardinals and robins would land on her shoulder and together whistle a Disney song.
We were in a tight spot.
I put an ad on Care.com.
“i am interested in the position,” a potential hire relayed.
Oh, are u? Are u? If “u” can’t capitalize “i” in response to a job ad what else can’t “u” be bothered to do?
Another described herself as a “part-time artist.”
Interesting. Tell me, what do you do with the other 23 hours in the day?
Despite a few crummy respondents, I went ahead and coughed up the one-month fee Care.com charges. This is how the site works: It sucks you in with slick TV ads and the promise of a free ad. It dangles babysitters in front of you. You try to browse the sitters. Some of them respond to your ad. The site blocks all of their contact information unless…you pay the low-low price of…etc. etc. I sound down on the site but I’m actually not. I’m just getting it back because it left me feeling hoodwinked since I was under the impression I was getting something for free. Nothing’s free in this world, ya mope!
I actually found the fee of about $30 to be a reasonable price. The site is useful, much (much) less creepy than Craigslist and easy to use. I had tried to advertise on my own at colleges and to network with other CF moms in my nanny search, but none of that panned out.
Using Care.com, I thought I had my nanny, a psychology grad student. She came to my house. She brought a notebook. A notebook! Her resume was flawless. She researched CF and asked thoughtful questions. I loved her! She was hired! Then her internship schedule changed. Back to the drawing board. I thought I had another nanny. She was a freelance writer looking to supplement her income. She didn’t give me the warm fuzzies like nanny number one, but she seemed capable and task-oriented. I had nothing against her, I just doubted she would fall in love with my babies. Working mom’s daycare fantasy = the person caring for your child will love your child. I was running out of options. We agreed she’d come on over so I could show her the ropes. The evening before her try-out, she told me she went with a family that offered more hours.
I got the news exactly one week before I was to go back to work, that I, in fact, had no childcare for my two children.
All that was for the best, because then Nanny X came our way.
I spoke to her on the phone in between nannies one and two and really liked her a lot. I liked her the best out of all. She is just so perfectly qualified. She is CPR certified, with flu shot and a car. She has a degree in early childhood education. She is overqualified to be my part-time nanny, really.
There was a catch. Nanny X starts work as a third grade teacher in the fall. Worried about having to do another nanny search in five months, I asked if I could consider her for back-up care.
Nanny two cancelled. Why had I been worried about something that was five months away? That’s like a lifetime! I need someone now! I texted Nanny X. Left Nanny X a voicemail. Sent Nanny X an e-mail. Realized I was stalking Nanny X. She didn’t hold it against me. Nanny X is like that.
Lo and behold, she was still available and she liked us too.
She came over today and I spent the morning going over our routine and trying to get out the door so I could run errands. Errands like buying pants for work. Yaaay. Post-baby pants shopping, ie, purgatory! Luckily, Kohl’s is having quite the blow-out sale leading up to Easter, so I didn’t spend a mint on pants I fully plan on not fitting into
any day now next year by the time Eli is 2. FYI, have a second kid and old fat becomes new thin. I’m not calling myself fat. I’m just relaying in a roundabout way my fantasy of time travel scenario in which I go back five years and slap old self. Old self deserves it for ever looking in the mirror and thinking the word “fat” or even something like “get to the gym.” No, NO don’t go to the gym. Eat cake and parade around in a bikini, you idiot! Anyway, hips don’t lie and pants must fit so I had to go and get some on sale at Kohl’s.
There was a lot to go over before pants purchase, dreaded errand. Laila seized the opportunity during my conversation with new nanny to throw a doll at her. She also relayed in a mean voice while we were coloring that she didn’t want to color. Then she threw her crayons on the ground.
Meanwhile Eli was having a high-maintenance day. He is a cozy little fella and he likes being held. He’s a baby so if he doesn’t get what he wants he starts crying. Some days – not every day but some – he really won’t be put down. Today was one of those days. He fussed. A lot.
Laila has her moments – I mean, come on, she’s 2, almost 3. But throwing toys at people? This actually isn’t like her. No really, it’s not, I swear. I swear nanny please don’t quit!
I shook up Laila’s world with the news I was returning to work, and that a new nanny was coming over who she had to listen to.
“Nanny is in charge,” I told her.
Well, Laila was going to see about that.
I got to show Nanny X a variety of discipline techniques due to Laila’s impromptu behavior showcase.
Apparently Laila calmed down after I left for a few hours. By that I mean, Laila locked herself in the bathroom while I was out. Nanny was changing Eli’s diaper. She heard Laila start screaming. Eli pooped all over himself. Nanny X did a cursory poo clean-up, put Eli down somewhere safe and talked Laila out of the bathroom somehow. Then Laila calmed down.
I came back with my pants. Nanny held Eli, a very satisfied little fellow, as Laila played with her Dora house. It was a calm scene. The dishes were done. Toys were put away.
Best of all- she didn’t quit.
She swept Laila’s hair off of her forehead and asked her what she wanted to do next time she came over.
I handed her a Starbucks latte and breathed a sigh of relief.
Nanny was going to love my babies.